- Associated Press - Thursday, May 25, 2017

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - The Federal Bureau of Investigation has raided the New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Department as part of an ongoing federal grand jury investigation.

U.S. Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Elizabeth Martinez said agents executed a federal search warrant at the department offices on Wednesday. She declined to provide any details about the investigation.

Taxation and Revenue Department spokesman Ben Cloutier said the search warrant involved a classified employee who has worked for the department since 2006.

“TRD is fully cooperating with the investigation and the employee in question has been placed on administrative leave,” Cloutier said in a statement.

It is unclear whether the federal investigation of the classified employee is related to a state inquiry of Demesia Padilla, the former taxation and revenue secretary. Padilla resigned in December after state investigators seized tax documents belonging to her and her husband. Neither of them has been charged with a crime.

Padilla, who had been one of the governor’s longest-serving Cabinet members, was the subject of an investigation by state Attorney General Hector Balderas. He was looking into a range of possible crimes, including tax evasion and embezzlement.

James Hallinan, a spokesman for Balderas, declined to comment on the FBI’s raid. But when asked whether his office had handed the Padilla case over to federal investigators, he said, “I can confirm that the investigation related to Demesia Padilla is still ongoing within the Office of the Attorney General.”

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